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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Microsoft Project Accessibility

Many accessibility features are built in to Microsoft Project and they do not require any special accessibility aids to use but unless you've been on one of the Microsoft Project training courses that are out there it is likely that you may miss some of the features available. This article aims to provide a little guidance to improving accessibility in Microsoft Project for those that have not been on a Project course.

One of the simplest ways to improve accessibility in Microsoft Project is to increase the magnification of a project to make information on the screen easier to read. This can be done by scaling views and reports, zooming the screen display or adjusting the timescale. The size of the toolbar and toolbar buttons can also be adjusted so that they are easier to see and use.

Another way to make reading text in Microsoft Project easier is to change text and background colours. You may find that higher contrast between text and background improves legibility.

It is also possible to change the appearance of views. The appearance of bars, boxes, link lines and text can all be changed in a view, you may apply formatting directly to any selection to make your Gantt chart view appear exactly how you want it to. The formatting toolbar allows you to enlarge field text and also to make it bold, italic, or underlined. You can change the appearance of a Gantt bar simply by double-clicking on it and then selecting the desired look. Additionally you can easily format the Gantt chart by using Microsoft Projects Gantt chart wizard.

Even those that have been on Microsoft Project training may not be aware of the additional accessibility features that are native to windows. These can also be useful in improving usability of Microsoft Project for those who have difficulty typing or using a mouse, that are blind or have poor vision, or who are deaf or hard of hearing. Windows accessibility features are installed during Windows set up and can be changed at any time via the windows control panel, these options are found under accessibility options.

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